Seconds later, as a dozen people run back and forth behind the reporter, a man – also without a mask – kisses Dowsely’s head and face three times live on air.
The vision taken at St Kilda beach, and at beaches in Williamstown and Port Melbourne, on Friday night comes as the state prepares for a weekend of hot weather amid strict rules around social distancing, two-hour outdoor time limits and mandatory mask wearing.
The forecast high for Melbourne this weekend is 28 degrees on Saturday and 27 degrees on Sunday.
A police spokeswoman said a number of fines were issued to people who breached directions at St Kilda beach on Friday with police planning an increase in their patrols of popular public spaces this weekend.
“As the weather starts to warm up, we know this is a time when many people would normally like to be out and about but it is important that if you choose to leave your home you continue to adhere to the directions of the Chief Health Officer,” they said.
“This includes following the limits around exercise and gathering, wearing a mask and not travelling further than 5km from home.
“While the majority of Victorians continue to do the right thing there unfortunately remains those who deliberately breach these restrictions and place lives at risk. “
There were 261 active cases of coronavirus in Victoria on Friday with seven new positive cases and two deaths.
Of the new cases, one was from a known outbreak but six remain under investigation.
Earlier on Friday, Premier Daniel Andrews urged any Victorian who may have COVID-19 symptoms to come forward and get tested.
“The weather on the weekend will be better. Can I ask every Victorian, if you have got symptoms this weekend, please don’t wait until Monday to get tested. Please get tested as soon as the symptoms are obvious to you,” he said.
“No one is pleased to be in the circumstance we are in, but people can see this strategy is working because it is. We have been able to take big steps in regional Victoria. We are so, so close to being able to do very similar things in metropolitan Melbourne.
“These numbers are coming down. This strategy is working. It is a credit to every single Victorian who is playing their part.”
Those caught breaching social distancing and stay at homes measures face $1652 on-the-spot fines and those caught outside their homes without a face mask face fines of $200.
People living in metropolitan Melbourne caught entering regional and rural Victoria without a lawful reason or who partake in an unlawful gathering face fines of $4957 per person.
Under the current restrictions affecting Melburnians, a maximum of five people from two households can gather together outside in public spaces.
Visitors can only attend another persons home if they are visiting an intimate parter, as part of the single-person bubble or for strict, approved care and compassion reasons.
Erin covers crime for The Age. Most recently she was a police reporter at the Geelong Advertiser.